I just wanted to give props, and a few suggestions, to the VIP crew and a few others...
My husband and I arrived on Wednesday and stayed through Monday in the VIP camping area. Our experience there was so amazing! You guys freaking rock! This was our 2nd time at Waka, both times doing VIP (2010, 2012). I met JT and Jim personally, and talked with many others that worked in VIP, and you guys are just outstanding with your hospitality and willingness to go out of your way to make sure the folks in VIP get treated with the utmost respect. Here are a few things I loved:
*** I loved that ya'll are always hanging around the VIP food tents checking up on people and making sure everyone has what they need.
*** I loved being greeted at the entrance when we pulled in with a handshake and sincere interest in where we were from and how many times we had been to Waka.
***I loved after getting our camp set up on Wed. night, walking up to the lounge area and seeing that huge bonfire blazing and all the people standing around sharing beers and smiles. It was a surreal moment.
***I loved you guys walking through the tables during lunch and dinner, introducing yourselves and seeing what we needed.
***I loved the bar staff at each VIP bar. These guys were amazing. They were so kind and had a great time playing around with us and joking around. They were excited about getting tips and always willing to sneak me an extra bag of vino
***I loved getting a deal on ice on Sunday night- 3 bags for $5!!!
***I loved the parking guy helping us to get the most prime location we could camp at- literally 10 feet from the main stage VIP entrance. We could've been directed anywhere back there, but the fact that you took our request and made it happen with a smile on your face is the kind of service I will shell out the big bucks for any day of the week.
***I loved that you were willing to look up weather radar on your phones every time I was worried about what the storm was going to do.
***I loved being treated with respect at all times. I loved not being hassled going from VIP camping to the Main Stage area and Revival area. I see what others are saying on the forum about security issues, and that was not my experience at all. Being treated like a responsible adult who knows how to handle herself and not being hassled is well worth the price of admission in VIP.
***I loved having the nice bathroom trailer- that thing rocked!!! I also loved that either people in VIP don't trash porto potty's as much, or you guys just get them cleaned more. Either way, finding a clean bathroom was never an issue.
***I loved Hannah coming out into the viewing area at Main Stage and passing out bottled waters. It was so thoughtful and very much appreciated.
*** And lastly, I LOVED Gary, the head security guy at main stage. That guy just rocked! He looked mean as hell and would make anyone afraid if he gave you that look, but if you talked to him, he was just a cuddly teddy bear. We made friends early on and I loved kidding around with him throughout the festival. He even listened to some issues I had and reworked his security set up to address the problem. I loved that he was so open to suggestions and not on a power trip. I hope to see him again in 2013! And that goes for security at all VIP areas and entrances- just kind, respectful folks.
All around, the VIP staff is just amazing. I hope Pipeline or whoever is in charge reads this and knows that the guys you have in charge of VIP know what they are doing, and you need to give them full reign to keep on enhancing our experience. We have done many, many festivals for 11 years now (since the 1st Roo) and VIP at Waka is the best festy experience you can have in my opinion. Keep up the AMAZING job boys and girls!
Now, a few suggestions:
***Please put some shade tent/EZ ups outside of the shower trailers for people waiting to use the shower. I know those are run by a company that is not Wakarusa, but maybe suggest that they bring some with them. It's hot sitting in that blazing sun waiting on a shower!
***The bathroom trailer seemed to be "closed for cleaning" ALOT! Especially on Sunday, it seemed like it was closed most of the day. Having more of those trailers, especially one by the main stage (hint,hint!) would be great.
***Props to the workers and service at the catering tents for lunch and dinner, they really were some of the nicest folks you will ever meet. But I would like to see an upgrade in the food offered. Even little things like adding a real salad bar with extra toppings to choose from and a variety of salad dressings would be much better than bag salad with ranch. My group just thought there were little ways they could step up the food offerings to make it more tasty and more filling. I have to reiterate though, the folks working the catering tent were the nicest folks around, and I wouldn't want to hurt their chances of getting the contract again by saying that. Just step it up some!
***And this has nothing to do with the VIP experience, but I would have loved if there would've been more variety of late night performers. I know I"m in the minority, but I am NOT an electronica kind of girl, but I do love to stay up late! Spreading the musical love late in to the night with more rock/jam/bluegrass options every night would make me more happy than I already am with the entire Waka experience.
I'll definitley see you all in 2013!!! Thanks for an amazing experience Waka!